New York Fashion Tech Lab has signed on Accenture as a partner for the 2018 program.

Springboard Enterprises co-founded NYFT Lab in 2013 with the Partnership Fund for New York City, along with the support of retailers and fashion brands to help grow women-led emerging tech companies at the intersection of fashion, retail and technology. The company this year completed its fourth annual 12-week program. There’s some funding for the program from Springboard, but most of the funding is from within the industry. That allows industry sponsors to learn about new tech ideas and work as mentors to further develop the ideas that they are most interested in.

Senior managing director at Accenture Jill Standish, who leads the company’s Retail Industry practice globally, said that with retailers and brands being disrupted by online “pure plays,” she sees Accenture’s role as partner with NYFT Lab to help the 2018 class participants more quickly accelerate their innovations to “better serve and connect consumers to the fashion industry.”

For the 2017 class, founding members J. Crew and Macy’s continued to participate in the program. Returning for the second year as tech partner was Microsoft. Also returning were second and third-year partners Bloomingdale’s and Kohl’s. New this year was luxury fashion e-tailer Matchesfashion.com and Vera Bradley.

Accenture is the first partner that has signed up for the 2018 class. NYFT Labs is expected to disclose in October who would be the mentors and partners for next year’s fifth class.

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